Posts Tagged ‘Glasgow Casting Club’

Get a Fly Casting Lesson

Monday, April 4th, 2011

Some say that I might be biased being Chairman of GAIA but I really do believe that we should all take casting lessons if you plan to be a fly fisherman.  Having done so you then need time to practice, going fishing is not enough you need to go practice.   Fly fishing has a technical requirement similar to a golf stroke, if you wish to fly fish you need to cast or you will struggle to get past go.   Golfers all take lessons at some stage in their golfing careers and most of them will continue to refresh their strokes or putting techniques.  They also practice, golf driving ranges and practice greens get used and professionals video their clients efforts to aid development.

Fly fisherman for some strange reason believe that they can go without instruction and development.  I was out the other day with an experienced fisherman in a boat and was surprised to see that he could not double haul. His fishing would have been more enjoyable if he could improve his casting.  It was not about distance but about less effort to attain the same result and after 8 hours in a boat at our age less effort has to be good.

Casting Clubs work as a support group

I doubt that he has ever had a lesson and yet was happy to spend £500 on a rod.  Expensive rods do not improve your casting, I own rods that cost many hundreds of pounds and yet often turn to rods that cost tens of pounds only, my first choice boat rod costs £70 and was won in a competition.  Its technique and practice that improve casting and fishing performance.

GAIA instructors learning

Photo courtesy of John Symonds

If you fish a river for trout or salmon than casting is even more important to cope with the vagaries of river currents and winds.  Master caster Gary Borger I think it was who said that having learned to cast well  and understand the principles with overhead casts it was then a requirement to learn to develop faults, curve casts, aerial mends, pile casts.  These are skills required to fish well especially on running water.  Notice that we have not even mentioned salmon fishing and spey casting.

After 40 years fly fishing I still get lessons and get videos of my technique I am constantly looking for improvement, my current project is sorting my left handed spey casting .  If you doubt the value of lessons go try it get some from a qualified instructor preferably a member of GAIA then go and practice in preparation to fish.

The Glasgow Boys

Tuesday, August 17th, 2010

Just got news that Andrew Toft has won an event at the World Casting Championship this on top of his  CLA Game Fair victory back in July.

There is a group of of quality casters in the West of Scotland who come from the Peter Anderson school of casting. Peter is the guru now in his 80’s but casts like a metronome and never misses a beat.  Around him has developed a group of quality casters who all at some point or other have had instruction from Peter, myself included.  Andrew has clearly gone on to develop his spey casting distance skills to make him top of the pile.

World Championships in Fly Casting

Andrew doing a demo at Tweedswood March 2010


Back to Fishing

Tuesday, August 17th, 2010

Well thats it Piping Live! over for another year.  Thats how I earn my living being involved in the National Piping Centre of Scotland and running Glasgow International Piping Festival aka Piping Live!  A mad week of piping when pipers from all over the world descend on us to play the pipes some 30,000 attend the festival annually Piping Live! 2010

Now maybe I can go fishing.  I have not been too active fishing of late but I have been to the Clyde to look for Mullet.  I went to the Black Cart just above where it enters the White Cart and then the Clyde.  I have had no success but I did manage to see a shoal and a few salmon.  This is a picture of the weir below the bridge where I had hoped to see fish the closest that I got was a shoal coming over the weir.

Black Cart Renfrew

What next well I have a couple of days booked on the Lake of Menteith and I have high hopes that the heather fly will be around and I can try my new foam pattern.

The Glasgow Casting Club is still doing well and is meeting every Thursday we are planning to welcome the British Fly Casting Club to Scotland in September 2011.

Coaching and Casting

Tuesday, May 25th, 2010

Well the Glasgow Casting Club is up and running again it seemed a seamless handover with the fly tiers.  We get on average about 15 guys turning up every Thursday evening at Knightswood pond both single handed and double.  There are always guys around to help with both disciplines and if you have any specific issues someone will have an answer for you.  It also a good place to try out rods and lines there is always likely to be someone has got what you would like.

knightswood Lake

The latest with the group is that we have had an approach from the BFCC to possibly run an event in Scotland in late 2011 which would be great if we can make it happen.

Reading their home page and their objectives it would appear that we share similar aims and objectives the first being :

To provide a sociable Club environment where casters of any ability can maximise their potential, whether it be to better understand tackle, catch more fish, or to cast a long way.

Four of us are off the Wales in a couple of weeks to join up with them and see what they do.

Coaching is still very active with a few workshops recently on the Clyde where it was bitterly cold but we did catch fish.  I have also had a number of 1-2-1 sessions with fishing and casting, fishing on the Lake and casting on the Clyde a great spot just above the m74 at Bothwell and what a great spot it was.

I am off to Nottingham this weekend as part of my coach educator program for the Angling Development Board running UKCC First4Sport Level 1’s and 2’s not sure why I have done it, but now that I am this far with it I need to complete .  Maybe get to fish this weekend just on my own.

A Casting Weekend

Monday, February 22nd, 2010

Practice makes perfect and I have to agree.  I have had a weekend with a fly rod in hand but no time to practice myself.   It looks like I will need to find a quiet spot and get some practice in my loops are looking a bit rough and my mends are suffering a bit.  It is amazing how bad things can get without practice.

On Saturday I had a day with 4 clients, total novices and 3 girls in the party.  They had decided that they would fish in order to do something different to celebrate a 26th birthday so they picked on me to take them fishing. 

 The day dawned  very bright with air temperature of -5 degrees.  The party arrived at the appointed time togged up in boots and casual cloths with handbags in tow.  Boots great boots they were, one pair were black with large white spots, another cerise and the final pair pink  they looked the part.  We had an hour on grass to get them going and discuss health and safety and simple roll casts before we went to fish.

Its the boots that did it!

I imagined that the cold and lack of fish response would soon get them going home again.  How very wrong I was  they stuck to the task in hand until late afternoon before retiring defeated to the pub for a late lunch.  it was not the best of days so out of guilt that they failed to catch I plan to take them again on a nice warm evening in may when hopefully we will catch a fish.

Next morning was bright and agian very cold and I went along to the Glasgow Casting Club hoping to get some practice in. 

Cold day on grass

I had tape and hoops in hand and set up on the grass to practice my mends both left and right but even this did not last when approximately 15 of the lads turned up.  My practice was soon disrupted with talk of rods lines and fishing.  Eventually I gave up on practice and retired to the van for coffee and hot cross buns.

What a great activity it is a good crowd of guys who collect twice a week to practice casting and support each other in their endeavours i would recommend the Glasgow Casting Club to all and

Coffe time at the van

if you do not live close by then form a club.